A secret of Vincent’s Room

Vincent’s Room or Bedroom painted by Van Gogh in 1888 is his best-known painting for its sky blue walls and a soft honey-yellow bed. That’s how this painting looks nowadays. However, original colors were slightly different.

It sounds ridiculous, but nice blue color is a result of pigment fading, and initially, the walls were violet. As Van Gogh wrote to his friend “The color has to do the job here: red floor, “butter” yellow bedstead and chairs, green sheets and pillows, and pale violet walls”.

In early 20th century artist just started switching form hand-made paints to manufactured ones, and, unfortunately, light-fastness of purchased paints was very unstable and unpredictable. It seems that red component of purple color, which Van Gogh used for the room in Arles, faded, having left only blue shades on canvas. As you can see, mauve walls bring a feeling of calm, while blue ones look more aggressive.

So, always prefer paints with high light-fastness to preserve your paintings for your grandchildren. Who knows, your paintings may cost million dollars in hundred years.

Professional oil paints include, for example, Master Class and Maimeri Puro brands, which are always available in our store. For watercolors, we recommend White Nights (also known under Yarka brand).

(c) RUSART Art Supplies

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